Signal & Noise & Nonlinear Narration

People often think that things make sense when they can be expressed linearly. Something is convincing if it can be said in words, in the form of a text, preferably in a book or in a (linear) film. And so one checks things (thoughts, observations) not only in the academy for their meaningfulness by checking whether they can be expressed in linear-causal logic. It is a standard procedure to distinguish sense from nonsense, signal from noise. Can something be explained in linear-causal terms? If so, it must be true.

The method of ordering things in a linear causal way is wonderful and has been instrumental in getting us to where we are as a humankind. Linear causal thinking has enabled us to develop not only the technologies that largely shape our lives around the world today, but also the societies and cultures in which we live. Linear-causal thinking shapes just about every aspect of life, how cities look as well as how communities are structured, how power plants or means of transportation are constructed.

And yet it is probably not the only method of recognizing and expressing meaningfulness. Another method (and I am tempted to say the other method) is non-linear, multi-causal thinking as expressed, for example, in Korsakow. Every thing (every thought, every observation) has many references at the simultaneously. All things influence each other, exert forces on each other. Thereby everything is always in motion and every thing has effects on all other things. This seems to me to be the basic principle, which is valid on all levels and everywhere in the universe. Within an atom as well as within galaxies. Our societies behave this way, our relationships with each other, everything we do has effects in all directions (the flap of a butterfly) and everything we do is at the same time the result of forces acting on us from all directions.

People often think that things make sense if they can be expressed linearly. I suspect it might be the other way around:

Linear forms of expression make sense of things that can be expressed in linear forms. Things that cannot be expressed linearly, on the other hand, seem meaningless, they seem to be “noise”.

Could it be that noise does not exist in the sense that what seems to us like noise is actually signal and we just cannot read it?